Entries Tagged as 'inspiration'

creating routines + getting things done.

Posted on: Monday, April 14, 2014

Thoughts on Creating Routines and Getting Things Done | Ann-Marie Loves | Quote by Pearl S. Buck

I go through phases where I spend my last few minutes every evening either scrolling through Instagram + Pinterest or by reading a book on my Kindle. Lately I’ve been turning the former way more often than the latter, but last Thursday, I decided to revisit my Kindle and ended up purchasing Manage Your Day-to-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind by Jocelyn K. Glei. Turns out, it was exactly what I needed to read! (What’s that saying about when you’re ready, the teacher will appear?) I quickly burned through half the book in a single evening and felt so inspired by the quote above, that I decided to create a new tradition: Friday morning coffee dates with my laptop and my to-do list. I am 100% guilty of waiting until my mood is “just right” or when inspiration strikes or when a deadline is dangerously close before I actually begin, so you better believe this quote was the kick in the pants that I desperately needed ;)

P.S. Normally I save work / life balance posts for my Workspace Wednesday series, but this quote just felt like the right note for kicking off of a killer Monday!

workspace wednesday | inspiring links.

Posted on: Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Inspiring Link | Ann-Marie Loves

Lately I’ve been stumbling upon so many inspiring articles, books, and quotes that have been making my head spin (in the best way possible). It wouldn’t be fair of me to keep them all to myself, so here’s a list of my recent favorites:

Rebuilding a strong brand. Sycamore Street Press is one of those companies that I totally admire (and adore!), so it was incredibly refreshing to read Eva’s candid account of SSP’s rebranding process.

Anything from Braid Creative. Some of my favorite posts include designing your dream job, a new year for your creative business, and manifesting money + dream clients. Those girls are awesome.

10 Ideas to Drum up Business. Like I mentioned yesterday, I just discovered Nubby Twiglet’s blog this past week and have been loving her posts.

Setting and Tackling Big Goals. What can I say? Elise is the master.

Hello Brick + Mortar. I thoroughly enjoy this series of posts on Oh So Beautiful Paper’s blog!

Tips for Shopping the LA Flower Mart. Super informative post for all flower-loving LA creatives!

Creative Diaries series. Breanna Rose has one of the most beautiful blogs I’ve ever seen and her Creative Diaries posts are no exception. So inspiring.

This quote. And this quote. And this one too.

Money: A Love Story. I know I touched on this briefly before, but man. This book has been a real game-changer for me. I devour as many pages as I can every morning when I wake up and every night when I go to bed.

The Stop Doing List. I can’t praise Danielle LaPorte enough. She is beyond all levels.

Money Mindset Shifts. Marie Forleo’s site is another huge wealth of business and lifestyle wisdom. I dare you to just watch one of her videos.

How Clutter Affects Your Productivity. Another gem that I randomly stumbled upon on Pinterest.

What awesome links have you come across recently?

pigment | san diego.

Posted on: Monday, March 17, 2014

Pigment | San Diego | via Ann-Marie Loves

I follow a few cool San Diego gals on Instagram and there always seems to be a common denominator amongst their feeds: Pigment! So of course, while in San Diego last week, I had to check it out for myself to see what the hype was all about. The verdict? Pigment far exceeded the hype. I mean, this shop has everything that I want: home goods, stationery, baby accessories, a succulent bar…!

Pigment | San Diego | via Ann-Marie Loves

I must have done five laps around the store, trying to take in every last detail, making sure I didn’t miss anything! I walked away with a Rifle card and a porcelain bunny nightlight for the nursery, but if money was no object, I would surely take one of everything.

Pigment | San Diego | via Ann-Marie Loves

Pigment, you’re a gem.

P.S. While in the North Park neighborhood, I also highly recommend stopping by Coffee + Tea Collective! Five words: BEST LATTE OF MY LIFE. Not only are the drinks wonderful, but the actual shop itself is modern, airy, and full of inspiring details that make me wish I was a local!

workspace wednesday | favorite podcast episodes.

Posted on: Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Favorite Podcast Episodes | Ann-Marie Loves

It’s no secret that I enjoy a good podcast.

As much as I love listening to music, sometimes I just want to drop in on a hilarious / insightful / inspiring conversation (without having to do any of the work, of course). My best podcast listening is done while cleaning house, taking a walk, or sitting in rush hour traffic. I have a long list of favorite shows that I frequent and am always on the hunt for new podcasts to add to my ever-growing playlist. Today I thought it would be fun to share some of favorite episodes from some of my favorite shows:

– The Lively Show: Blogging, Biz, and Motherhood with Erin Loechner – Anytime I can listen to a major blogger speak, I’m all ears. I am such a fan of Erin Loechner and I find her soft-spoken voice and humble outlook on her online success to be incredibly refreshing.

– After the Jump: Live the Life You Want to Live – Let me just say that Grace Bonney knows how to put together an inspiring podcast. I love when a new episode pops up in my feed, especially when it has anything to do with work / life balance, such as this one.

– The JV Club: Casey Wilson – Oh, Casey Wilson. How I adore her (RIP Happy Endings!). The JV Club is always a must-listen for me and this particular episode is so funny and touching, I could play it over and over.

– With Purpose: Kathleen Shannon – Kathleen of Braid Creative is constantly churning out solid blogging and business advice that helps me to rethink the way I conduct my own brand and online presence, so I was thrilled to hear her speak on these matters.

– Our Style Stories: A Conversation with Bri + Trey Denton – Random Instagram discoveries are my favorite form of social media kismet. It was a happy accident when I stumbled upon Hilary Walker because I adore her podcast; especially this interview!

What are your favorite podcasts? I love finding new gems!

workspace wednesday | motivation.

Posted on: Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Ten Tips for Getting Motivated | Ann-Marie Loves

Motivation is one of those topics I’m not really sure I’m qualified to speak on. Like most people, I struggle with this nearly every. single. day. Some days I wake up feeling super super pumped and can crank out work like nobody’s business. But most days? It takes a little convincing to get me going. Here are some of my tried-and-true tricks for getting motivated:


1. Lists. Making lists (especially on pretty notepads!) always helps me to streamline my priorities and gives me visual incentive to get things done. Checking things off looks and feels good.

2. Clean house. If my environment is in disarray, my mind is in disarray. It really is as clear cut as that. So if I know that washing dishes or straightening up my desk will make me feel better about my space, I will take the extra fifteen minutes to knock out those chores before trying to force myself to work.

3. Beautiful things around me. Much like the last tip, I am my most productive self when I am surrounded by beauty. Nothing is more inspiring than a well-styled bookshelf, or a colorful coffee mug filled with my favorite brew, or freshly painted red fingernails typing at the keyboard. I’m absolutely driven by aesthetics.

4. Change of venue. Lately I’ve been killing three birds with one stone by walking to a coffee shop that’s 1.5 – 2 miles away from my house to get work done. Not only do I get exercise and coffee (okay, and a muffin) out of the deal, but I also get to work in a new environment that inspires me to get down to business. I like to set mini goals for my coffee shop work sessions, such as “I will write three blog posts before I leave.” Which brings me to my next point…

5. Mini goals. In addition to making a daily to-do list, I also like to set mini goals for myself. These can be simple, like “cross off six items before John gets home from work” or more involved, like “launch e-course by Tuesday January 28th.” The secret to mini goals is that they’re small and easily attainable. Most of them can be achieved in less than a week, sometimes less than a day! Of course I have long term goals that I always keep in the back of my mind (“buy a house in five years”), but the big picture dreams are not nearly as motivating to me as my daily intentions.

6. Workout. I know, I know. This is the last thing many people want to hear, but man, working out works. Even if I don’t work out in the morning but I know I will be exercising later in the day, I’m much more motivated to get things done. It’s almost like I have to physically wear myself out before my brain will turn off all the background “noise” and allow me to focus on what needs to be done.

7. Get dressed. For anyone in the regular 8-5 world, this is obviously a no-brainer. But for those of us who work from home? Mmm…not so much. I’ve learned that if I make myself get dressed within an hour of waking up, my day feels infinitely more productive. I like knowing that I can run a quick errand or grab a coffee or heck, even answer the door, at a moment’s notice. Plus there’s something about regular clothes (vs. pajamas) that makes me feel like a real live working adult! (ha!)

8. Blogs / Instagram / Pinterest. While these three things may seem like a great way to put off your to-do list for several hours at a time, they’re also a powerful tool for productivity. I love anything Elise writes on goal-setting. I adore Tara Whitney’s take on Southern California living via her Instagram feed. And a quick scroll through my pins is a surefire way to get my creative juices flowing.

9. Podcasts. I’ve talked about my love for podcasts once, twice, or ten times before, but they bear mentioning yet again. If I’m performing a (relatively) mindless task, such as editing photos or designing new buttons for my blog, I love having a great podcast to keep me company. Recently I’ve been returning to old faves, such as The JV Club, The Art of Simple, and always, Joy the Baker.

10. Nap. When all else fails, I take a nap. Sleep is truly a wonderful thing in that I always wake up feeling refreshed and ready to take on the world!


What are your favorite ways to spark a little motivation?

workspace wednesday | dream bigger.

Posted on: Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Dream Bigger | Via Ann-Marie Loves

The other night while watching the 100th episode of Parks & Rec, I was completely inspired by Jenn Barkley’s (very expensive) advice to Leslie Knope regarding running a smear campaign to get back into local government:


Jenn: “Terrible people defeat great people all of the time. I should know, because terrible people have paid me so much money that I have a condo on every Virgin Island. Now…you might win. You’re smart. But why would you want to?

Leslie: Because it’s my dream job!

Jenn: Then dream bigger! Look, you love this town. It’s being run by monsters and morons. Get a better job. Rise above their heads. Affect change at a higher level. Don’t be the kid that graduates high school and hangs out in the school parking lot. Look, Pawnee has done you a favor. You’ve outgrown them. You’ve got talent, you’ve got name recognition, and that means that you have a bright wide open future with a thousand options! State Senate, federal jobs, even Congress. All of these are doable for you. And you can trust me. Because I don’t care enough about you to lie.”


SO GOOD! (Especially that last line – ha!)

new apartment inspiration.

Posted on: Thursday, October 3, 2013

As soon as I walked through our new place a few weeks ago, I was already mentally decorating every nook + cranny.

Even though John and I have lived in a few different places while technically in our adulthood, I feel like this Pasadena apartment will be our first REAL adult home. All of our previous spaces have been filled with hand-me-downs and IKEA furnishings that were perfect for our budget + tastes at the time, but don’t exactly represent our present day styles. I am really hoping to get rid of most of what we currently own and start FRESH! (Doesn’t that sound amazing?)

Here are some photos that have been making my eyes so happy lately:

New Apartment Inspiration | Ann-Marie Loves

LEFT: I am on the hunt for some awesome dining room seating options, especially colorful club chairs. | RIGHT: I know I say this all the time, but FOR REAL! I want to put all of my beautiful kitchenware to work and learn how to cook!

New Apartment Inspiration | Ann-Marie Loves

John’s incredibly talented cousin Veronica sells these fabulous air plant installations that I am coveting for my own walls.

New Apartment Inspiration | Ann-Marie Loves

I’m loving all the subtle textures + patterns in this bedroom (and whole house!). Since John and I decided to turn the larger of the two bedrooms into an office, my goal is to keep our small bedroom as clean and clutter-free as possible. We’ll see how it goes…

New Apartment Inspiration | Ann-Marie Loves

LEFT: I am loving everything about this little office vingette. The desk, the rug, the throw, the map…I’ll take it all. | RIGHT: A new office chair in a bold color is just what I need to offset our white walls.

New Apartment Inspiration | Ann-Marie Loves

With all of the thrifted glassware I’ve amassed for the wedding, I can’t wait to throw some cocktail parties!

New Apartment Inspiration | Ann-Marie Loves

LEFT: I feel a DIY coming on… | RIGHT: Everything about Bri Emery’s living room (designed by Emily Henderson!) is pure happiness! I especially love the aqua sofa and the gold side tables.

I can’t wait to get in there and get to work!

sweet paper crafts.

Posted on: Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Sweet Paper Crafts | via Ann-Marie Loves

You may or may not know by now that I have a slight penchant for all things paper. So when I spotted Sweet Paper Crafts by Mollie Greene at B+N a few weeks back, I knew it had to come home with me that very night.

Sweet Paper Crafts | via Ann-Marie Loves

Not only is it super well-designed and beautifully photographed, but it also passes my “will this spine look good on a bookshelf?” test with flying colors. Every single project is something that I would actually make and use for wedding and home decor purposes. I’m especially fond of the paper flowers DIY!

Sweet Paper Crafts | via Ann-Marie Loves

The more inspiring craft books I come across, the more I am determined to pen one of my one someday soon. I already have a few titles + concepts in mind…now I need to make it happen! (Hold me to it!)

workspace wednesday | gathering inspiration.

Posted on: Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Ann-Marie Morris | Pinterest Faves

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

After a solid week and a half of nonstop work, I made the executive decision to throw myself a freaking bone and take a night off. So of course, I immediately went on a Pinterest bender. When paired with a cup of coffee (or glass of wine, depending on the time of day), there’s nothing else that simultaneously relaxes and excites me as much as a little visual inspiration seeking. My new favorite thing to do is find inspiring new feeds to follow…so much fun! I’ve also been trying to notice how inspiration “feels”…have you ever done this? Whenever a brilliant idea crosses my mind, I feel it in the top of my stomach. Such a strange correlation, but I guess there’s truth behind “going with your gut!”

Where are your favorite places to find inspiration?

the mindy project set design

Posted on: Tuesday, June 4, 2013

One of my new favorite shows from this past year is The Mindy Project. I have long been a Mindy Kaling fan, so it was a no-brainer that I would fall for her show. Aside from The Mindy Project’s obvious comedic genius, the set design is KILLER. I always pay greater attention to sets than I do to dialogue, and Mindy’s character’s apartment always has me pausing + rewinding so I can really study her space. (It’s not annoying at all to anyone else watching with me, I promise.)

So being the obsessive person that I am, I did a little interneting and found these photos and interesting set design tidbits from EW:

The Mindy Project Set Design | via Ann-Marie Loves Paper

This walk-in closet is just an extension of Mindy’s amazing bedroom (seriously, you’ll have to watch the show just to see her headboard!). I love her colorful wardrobe + the line of boots below the window sill.

The Mindy Project Set Design | via Ann-Marie Loves Paper

Obviously I’m obsessed with the craft space. According to the set designer, this little nook was constructed to feature ribbons + other embellishments that Mindy’s character would pull from to create a card or decorate a box or pot. And I’m really digging the sofa + pillows at the end of the bed…! LOVE.

The Mindy Project Set Design | via Ann-Marie Loves Paper

Since Mindy’s character is more of a restaurant-goer than an actual cook, the production designer gathered real menus from various NYC eateries and clipped them to the refrigerator. I love how colorful and real this space looks!

P.S. If you haven’t already, you MUST read her ridiculously hilarious book!

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